Category Archives: Uncategorized

Aussie Gear Fundraiser for the Fireys

A small group of Australian Guitar makers, Amp and Pedal Builders is donating the country´s best hand-made gear to support the Fireys. Every $10 AU donated gets a virtual raffle ticket to a number of prize pools that are evolving. The Raffles will be drawn shortly after the fundraiser closes. This effort has been initiated by Tim Lovell of Lovell Amps and Mark Quarrel of Kink Guitar Pedals with donations from many others. All funds raised will go to The Trustee for COUNTRY FIRE AUTHORITY & BRIGADES DONATIONS FUND. Support it if you can! The fundraiser deadline has been extended to February 14. DONATE HERE

AMEB Offers to Replace Music Lost in the Bushfires

In a magnanimous gesture, our friends at AMEB have offered support for musicians affected by the 2019/2020 Australian bushfires
The AMEB would like to help those teachers and students affected to rebuild their musical lives by replacing any AMEB publications lost due to the recent bushfires.
“Our thoughts are with everyone affected by Australia’s bushfire emergency and all those working tirelessly to protect our communities”.

The AMEB is calling for people affected get in touch and let them know which books are needed and where these books books should be sent. Please refer to the AMEB Online Shop for the full selection of AMEB publications available.

To make a claim please contact the AMEB Federal Office on 1300 725 709 or send an email to


Strong Australian Attendance at the NAMM Show

The NAMM Show had a large antipodean attendance in 2020 attending what was, as has been the case annually for a while now, the biggest show yet. NAMM’s importance as an international event is really reaching a zenith and the additional training aspects added for the broader music, sound and production industries has given the show a large dose of extra grunt in content and attendances. The professional development aspects grow in quality, with the Ideas Centre sharing great industry ideas and achievements to full houses. Logistically the show keeps improving with traffic in and out of exhibits with the creation of a an exhibits precinct, a big improvement.
A credit to the organising team, the NAMM Show is an amazing showcase to the music, sound and production industries.
The show highlights the advocacy efforts the NAMM Foundation as well as the international network that has developed. The AMA was represented at the ICC Meeting of countries by Anthony Ursino and Rob Walker, where the panel discussed issues such as sustainability, how to better engage in Make Music Day,
We also attended meetings with NAMM International and Government Affairs directors as well as president, Joe Lamond. The AMA also assisted in the development of the NAMM Oral History Library. Greg Phillips was all over the show shooting content for members too, and bringing the new release news first to Australia.
The Annual AMA reception was at capacity and enjoyed by all at the end of a long Friday.
Adelaide retailer Cecere’s Music was presented with a NAMM Milestone Award at a gala breakfast event, to highlight a year when Australia was very well represented.

Left: Andrew Collyer, Managing Director of Hal Leonard Australia at his first NAMM Show on the impressive Hal stand. Right: NAMM CEO Joe Lamond with Claudio and Joe Cecere after presenting a NAMM Milestone Award for the 50th Anniversary of Cecere’s Music in South Australia

Left:Anthony Ursino, Graham Hoskins & Michael Jago at the NAMM Reception Right: Neville and Linda Kitchen with Nashville based Aussie, Joe Robinson, whose signature Maton was released at NAMM

Left: NAMM CEO, Joe Lamond welcomes Andre Hine and Chris Green of Mannys, with Roger Clapton and Michael Jago to the now annual NAMM reception.
Right: Greg Aitken of Brass Music Specialists with colleague Bodhi Scott-Jones

Left: Glenn Haworth presents to a packed house at the NAMM Ideas Centre.
Right: Australis’ Adam Goglis with Chris Herring of Yamaha Music at the show reception

Left: AMA President, Yamaha’s Michael Shade with now Seattle based Brendan Callinan, CEO of Roland Cloud
Right: Nick Middleton Roland & Miles Jackson Cole Clark Guitars

Left: Nathan Biggin and Michael Sher Right:Kristjan Snorrason of Music Junction with Tim Fogarty and Yamaha’s Michael Gonthier








Mannys to open in Perth – Store DJ to move in too

Mannys will open in Perth in 2020. “As with other Mannys locations, Store DJ will be housed in the same building – a setup that has been working really well for us, and for our customers”, said CEO Andrew Muller.  The desire was to be close to the city to recreate what has been created in Richmond, Fitzroy, Alexandria & Fortitude Valley locations and West Leederville fitted the bill.
The current location of Store DJ in Cannington will close when the lease expires on that property in June.

Andrew concluded that the store would be open before June 2020.

Rosewood restrictions on finished instruments lifted on schedule

Members have been advised of the new regulations applying from November 29th regarding the trade in finished musical instruments containing rosewood. As announced earlier (full details here), after three years of industry lobbying the CITES meeting in Geneva in August voted in favour of allowing exemptions for trade and movement of finished musical instruments containing rosewood. Imports and exports of finished musical instruments, finished parts and finished accessories will no longer need a CITES permit. The exception applies to all species of dalbergia except Brazilian rosewood, which remains on CITES Appendix I.

Permits are not be required after 26 November, 2019. The Department of Energy and Environment have sent advice to stakeholders, and advised it has implemented the new processes.

AMA Announces New RISK Management Partership with Marsh Entertainment

Your AMA committee has been working on improving member benefits in recent months. During this time, a new industry risk management partnership with Marsh Entertainment, which we believe is a step forward in servicing not only our businesses with better insurance options and lower premiums, but our customers with new introducer agreements for AMA member stores.

“The AMA looks to the future with a new insurance partnership with Marsh Entertainment, which we are confident will give members the best possible rates for their business insurance, as well as giving them the opportunity to provide extra customer service. In testing the waters, Marsh Entertainment was able to put forward a comprehensive package for the AMA’s insurances, which saved on last year’s package,e with some improved levels of coverage as well. We are confident that Marsh can bring a new level of service and value to our members for many years to come.” said Rob Walker, CEO, of the Australian Music Association

Vale Ted Middleton

Edward ‘Ted’ Middleton  (1944 – 2019)

Ted Middleton



The association was sad to learn of the passing of Ted Middleton on September 3rd. Ted was a very popular and well-respected member of the music products industry. Born in Scotland, raised in England, his parents were wartime entertainers who migrated to Australia. He formed the band, “The Boys”, who were moderately successful (supporting the Bee Gees and a few and other famous touring bands). He then owned and operated Bondi Music Headquarters for more than 15 years in the 80s and 90s before moving to Queensland in the late 90s. There, Ted worked representing many of the world’s leading brands and suppliers in that state. These Sydney Guitar Trader, Kurt Jacob and Co, Gibson Guitars – AMI, Casio, Syntec | Sennheiser , Intermusic IMD , HQ Agencies , Jet Music International and Maton for whom he worked for 20 years. He was most recently in business with his son Eddie where he was CFO of Jet Music. He loved playing guitar, cars, motorbikes and soccer, particularly Arsenal, and will always be remembered for his quick wit and sense of humour.

Ted was married to his wife Bronwyn for 43 years and had two kids; Katie and Eddie. We offer our condolences to the family and Ted’s close friends.

Ted Middleton and Tommy Emmanuel

Vale Steve Lincoln Smith

It is with great sadness that we announce that our friend and colleague, Steve Lincoln Smith passed away on September 8 with his wife Julie by his side. He was 60 years old.

While his industry friends and colleagues knew he was crook, his passing has come as a surprise to many, and we offer our heartfelt  condolences to Julie and the family as well as his large circle of friends and admirers.

It was only in May that Steve was added to the AMA’s Honour Roll for his outstanding and long service to the music products industry.

Steve commenced employment in the music products industry at aged 17, retiring at 60 years of age. Over those 43 years he worked for Rose Music, Yamaha Australia, Yamaha Japan, Innovative Music, in Retail, Wholesale, as Importer, Sub-contractor, performed as Product Demonstrator, Product Specialist, International, Domestic, NAMM presenter, Session Musician, Producer, Music Director, Performer, Touring Artist, Jingle Writer,.

Steve was considered an innovator, and a champion of music technology in Australia.

Steve was a classically trained pianist with an appreciation of the full orchestral landscape including a keen knowledge of string arranging. His first temptation away from the classical world was for the sounds and texture of the Hammond Organ in combination with the Leslie Speaker but it was synthesisers with their many varied sounds and unlimited possibilities that changed his musical direction.

Steve described himself as really a “classical musician with a decided bent toward Rock, Soul, Jazz and Funk”.  It was this passion for using new musical tools that has allowed Steve the freedom to create works in almost any style. His knowledge and deep understanding of the technology behind the music is also key to his ability to shine above other players.

At one point in his musical career Steve was a sought after session musician working in the studio on major releases, some of the more well-known artists included John Farnham, The Little River Band, David Hirschfelder, Kids in the Kitchen, Dear Enemy, Alias Smith and Jones and James Morrison.

For many years Steve has been the Musical Director of a well-known Melbourne Advertising and Jingle production house while also building up a large music technology company, Innovative Music. With his wife and partner Julie they forged new paths for the industry and encouraged new genres of music to flourish in Australia.

Our music industry will be the poorer without him. As colleague and friend Tony Burn said today “A great man, musician and corporate citizen. A huge loss to the industry, let alone family and friends”.

Steve Receives his AMA Honour Roll Award in May 2019

A Memorial will be held from 2pm-5pm, Friday, September 20, at Leonda, 2 Wallen Road, Hawthorn VIC 3122.




Rosewood Restrictions to be lifted for Musical Instruments

After three years of work and representation from a global coalition of companies and associations the CITES meeting in Geneva has voted in favour of allowing exemptions for trade and movement of finished musical instruments containing rosewood. Imports and exports of finished musical instruments, finished parts and finished accessories will no longer need a CITES permit. The exception applies to all species of dalbergia except Brazilian rosewood, which remains on CITES Appendix I.

Permits will not be required after 26 November, 2019. The Department of Energy and Environment have sent advice to stakeholders.

The AMA’s Rob Walker said, “in a time when pressure mounts on profitability in our industry, the removal of significant administrative requirements will be welcome news to many wholesalers and manufacturers of musical instruments.”

“The consensus reached in Geneva this week and the new policies adopted by CITES parties are the result of more than three years of collaboration among international music stakeholders, government officials, and conservation leaders,” noted Heather Noonan, vice president of advocacy for the League of American Orchestras. “Musical instrument stakeholders have a lasting commitment to the goals of CITES, will remain at the table for ongoing conversations, and are committed to educating the music community globally about how compliance with CITES requirements will support both urgent conservation needs and essential international cultural activity.”

The Coalition has made a compelling case to authorities and all four items that were the focus of our groups’ efforts were adopted. They are;

Prop. 52 Dalbergia Annotation #15
The proposal by Canada and the EU was accepted by consensus, with the part c exemption for finished musical instruments, parts, and accessories – and the related definitions that we supported – fully intact! Revisions were made to part b. of the annotation to expand the weight limit to 10kg per shipment, to accommodate handicrafts, both shipped and as personal effects. The proposal also includes a mandate for the Secretariat to undertake a study to assess the impact of Annotation #15’s exemption for finished products up to 10kg per shipment and finished musical instruments, parts, and accessories. If undertaken, the results of the study would be reviewed by the Standing Committee, to potentially inform an amendment proposal for CoP19. In other words, the discussions about further improving Annotation #15 will continue in the next three years.
It is of note that the Annotations Committee will also be re-established to review all annotations. And, in a separate decision, a mandate was created to study rosewood and potentially convene related workshops before CoP19.
The new exemptions goes into effect after 90 days from adoption.

Prop. 57 Cedrela
The proposal from Ecuador was annotated with #6 to require permits only for logs, sawn wood, veneer sheets, and plywood, with a limited application to neotropical species. This means that musical instruments containing cedrela will not require CITES permits.

The Cedrela listing will not have effect for 12 months from adoption.

Prop. 13 Mammoth
The proposal was withdrawn by Israel, in response to objections from the Secretariat and Parties, primarily to do with the extinct species being outside the scope of the Convention. A new decision was accepted, directing the Secretariat – subject to external funding – to conduct a study on how trade in mammoth impacts trade in elephant ivory. If undertaken, the findings would be reported to the Standing Committee, which might inform proposals for CoP19.

Doc. 56 Simplified Procedures (relevant to the Musical Instrument Certificate)
A resolution was approved to initiate an new effort to streamline and simplify permit requirements for “the international movement of CITES specimens where the trade will have a negligible impact on the conservation of the species concerned.” This language was added and endorsed by the US and the EU with the intention that it will address the non-commercial cross-border movement of musical instruments, and result in a proposal for CoP19 to reduce the burdens associated with the CITES Musical Instrument Certificate.